"Only 8 out of 74 project worldwide were funded, and IRML was the only
non-U.S. institution selected, being alongside MIT, CMU and Yale in order to
carry out research that would lead to building the robots of the future,"
the university said.
Officials said Microsoft intends to fund the research. Two UAE
scientists, identified as Nikolaos Mavridis and Tamer Rabie, were selected
to work on the project.
Facebots was designed to utilize information published on FaceBook. The
robot would be programmed to identify and recognize humans and their
IRML, directed by Mavridis, was founded in September 2007. The
laboratory, with five faculty members and 15 students, intends to host the
first Arabic-speaking robot, IbnSina.